Patients with Type 2 diabetes sometimes let their diet slide because they feel fine and figure it won’t hurt to be less strict about blood sugar control. But high blood sugar continues to damage your body, even without causing symptoms. That’s why the team at Midwest Regional Health Services in Omaha, Nebraska, works closely with each patient, helping them develop a lifestyle plan they can stick with that manages their diabetes and protects their long-term health. To get diabetes support, call the office or schedule an appointment online.
Diabetes develops when you have a problem with insulin, which leads to blood sugar levels that are higher than normal. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder in which your pancreas is damaged and can’t produce any insulin.
If you have Type 2 diabetes, your pancreas produces insulin, but not enough to keep blood sugar levels normal. Patients with this type of diabetes also have insulin resistance, so they can’t efficiently use the insulin that’s produced.
When blood sugar levels are too high, the excess sugar damages nerves and small blood vessels. Over time, the ongoing damage leads to:
People with diabetes have nearly double the risk of dying from heart disease or stroke.
Both types of diabetes cause symptoms such as:
If you have Type 1 diabetes, your symptoms appear quickly once the pancreas is damaged. By comparison, Type 2 diabetes develops gradually over many years, making it hard to recognize the symptoms.
You can’t do anything to avoid Type 1 diabetes, but you do have a window of opportunity for preventing Type 2 diabetes. Since Type 2 diabetes develops gradually, there is a time when your blood sugar is higher than normal but not yet high enough to cause diabetes. This is when you can stop the progression to full-blown diabetes by taking steps to lower your blood sugar.
Once you’re diagnosed with diabetes, your ongoing health depends on keeping your blood sugar within normal limits. Your provider creates an individualized treatment plan that includes:
You learn how to follow a balanced meal plan and limit your consumption of sugary carbohydrates. Getting regular exercise and losing weight, if needed, are also key parts of diabetes management.
Patients with Type 1 diabetes need to take insulin and regularly check their blood sugar levels. Those with Type 2 diabetes may need insulin or another type of medication that lowers blood sugar if lifestyle changes can’t keep their blood sugar well-controlled.
To get the ongoing medical care you need for diabetes, call Midwest Regional Health Services or schedule an appointment online.